June 14, 2007

The Declining Media Influence of the Association of Muslim Scholars

Formerly a staple of reports in the Associated Press and other news organizations, the credibility of the Iraqi group known as the Association of Muslims Scholars (also known as the Muslim Scholars Association) seems to have fallen on hard times.

The al-Qaeda-aligned group's credibility may have begun to diminish when it claimed that 18 people died in an inferno at the al-Muhaimin mosque in Hurriyah, Baghdad, as part of a highly-disputed series of AP stories claiming that up to 24 people died and four mosques were "burned and blew up" on November 24, 2006. A photo taken the next day from inside the mosque rebutted that claim.

The Associated Press again used the Association of Muslim Scholars as a source for a dubious account on April 10, 2007, as the AMS made the following inflammatory charge:

The Muslim Scholars Association, a Sunni group, issued a statement quoting witnesses as saying Tuesday's battle began after Iraqi troops entered a mosque and executed two young men in front of other worshippers. Ground forces used tear gas on civilians, it said.

These charges were never substantiated.

I asked at the time, "Why does the Associated Press continue to use an organization with an obvious political agenda, ties to al Qaeda, and a documented history of providing false information as a source?"

Apparently, someone at the major media organizations had similar misgivings about the credibility of the Association of Muslim Scholars at roughly that time, or shortly thereafter.

A Google News search for "Association of Muslim Scholars" and a search for "Muslim Scholars Association show that no prominent news organizations have used the AMS as a source for over a month, even as links from lesser news sources (primarily blogs) show that the organization are still issuing press releases.

Apparently, it only took four years of publishing the propaganda of the AMS as news for the professional media to finally realize they were being had.

How encouraging.

Posted by Confederate Yankee at June 14, 2007 11:21 AM

These guys give Islam a bad name...

Posted by: the_velociraptor at June 20, 2007 12:15 AM